Antifungal EPDM rubber bellow compound
Trostel Ltd. announced it has completed work on an ASTM-compliant, fungus-resistant EPDM rubber compound. The material was specifically developed to be used in situations where rubber is expected to operate in a high humidity, high ambient temperature environment – such as the rubber door seal on front-loading washing machines.
The antifungal ingredient contains no heavy metals and is not carcinogenic, teratogenic or mutagenic. According to Trostel, the injection-mouldable rubber compound exceeded stringent tests for mould growth and durability: ASTM standard G21 (Standard Practice for Determining Resistance of Synthetic Polymeric Materials to Fungi) – an industry standard test for seals – required the antifungal EPDM compound to be held at 28 – 30 °C with 85 % relative humidity for four weeks.
At the same time, the compound was exposed to Aspergillus brasiliensis, Penicillium funiculosum, Chaetomium globosum, Trichoderma virens and Aureobasidium pullulans in a nutrient-rich environment. After exposure for four weeks, the new Trostel compound exhibited no fungal growth per ASTM International standard and prevents mould issues, says the manufacturer. The compound also was subjected to stringent, proprietary durability tests to simulate real-world applications.
Seals made of the compound were placed in two different front-loading washing machines – one with an off-balance load, and another with terry cloth towels simulating a laundry environment that would be most conducive to mould build-up – and each was run continuously for seven months. After the tests concluded, simulating about 15 years of normal life, the seals showed no signs of mould, wear, leakage or objectionable odours, says Trostel.